Streptococcus

Strep throat; caused by streptococcus

Description and Causative Agent:

  • Streptococcus is a bacteria that can come in various forms. Streptococcus is a genus bacteria that belongs to the phylum firmicutes and lactic acid bacteria group. Strep throat is a common complaint among patients. Sore throat is identified with group A streptococcus, which is also known as GAS. Group A streptococcus bacteria is often found in the throat or on your skin and can also have no symptoms. The infections from group A are usually only mild illnesses, such as strep throat and also impetigo. Sometimes they can cause life threatening problems.
  • The causative agent of strep throat is streptococcus.

Diagnosis and Disease Course:

  • Doctors will usually diagnose strep throat through physical exams and lab tests. During the exam to check and see if you have it they will check whether or not you have a fever and enlarged lymph nodes. They will also use a tongue depressor so they can see your throat and tonsils at a better view. On the tonsils they will check and see if you have any swelling, redness, or white puss. Tiny red spots can occur on the soft or hard palate as well. Even though you will be able to tell it's an infection you won't be able to tell if it's viral or bacterial.
  • In past cases of strep throat doctors would take specimens of the bacteria from a patient's throat and wait 24-48 hours for the results. If the specimen showed signs of streptococcus then they would start antibiotics. Because people would start to get worse waiting for the specimen to come back doctors go ahead and start patients on the antibiotics right away.


Pictures:

Group A Streptococcus or Group B Streptococcus...

Relative Frequency, Target Audience, and Possible Complications:


  • After having your tonsils removed you can still get strep throat. Even though they are still recurring after your tonsils are removed sometimes the severeness of the infection is reduced. As you get older your strep throat will start to occur less often.
  • The target audience for strep throat is mostly kids. If you are trying to decide whether or not to remove your child's tonsils you should consider anesthesia, bleeding, and how many days they will miss from school.
  • Strep throat is one of the most common forms of an upper respiratory infection and patient cases continue to increase every day. Complications are actually rare to people who are not prescribed antibiotics, or don't receive it right away. Prescribing antibiotics increases your chance for the infection to come back, which will also lead to the bacteria being immune to that certain antibiotic.



Strep Throat

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